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Kirsten Vangsness plays computer wiz Penelope Garcia who witnesses a murder in a scene filmed at the Mil Potrero Y, west of Cuddy Valley. [Criminal Minds publicity photo]
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Mud-splattered SUVs and a Sitka, Alaska sheriff’s vehicle are brought in to Frazier Park to give the place more of a Klondike feel. [Mountain Enterprise photo]
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Production crews for Criminal Minds set up for filming at the Mil Potrero Y, Monday morning March 29. [Mountain Enterprise photo]
By Gary Meyer
FRAZIER PARK, Calif. (Monday, March 29, 2010, 11:55 p.m.)—The CBS crime drama Criminal Minds is taking over the mountain this week, as the FBI’s seven-member Behavioral Analysis Unit (BAU) pre-reads the mind of a serial killer who has targeted the fictional town of Franklin, Alaska.
Production began Monday at the Mil Potrero Y, where techno-geek BAU member Penelope Garcia (played by Kirsten Vangsness) witnesses a murder. BAU members will discover on Monday that they’re forced to share rooms in a tiny motel called the Tavern Inn, known locally as Alpine Plaza.
Tuesday will find Mt. Pinos Way in Frazier Park full of production vehicles and actors brandishing weapons at Sue’s Tavern. No shots will be fired. Then the Assembly of God church will become an Alaskan schoolhouse.
Thursday The Mountain Enterprise office becomes the town’s sheriff’s station. Please be sure to dial 911 in an emergency—not the newspaper.
Other locations will include Big John’s Restaurant, a house on Harriet Road and a house on Pomona Trail.
According to Location Manager Jeff Spellman, two teams work simultaneously to prepare locations for filming. The production cycle is eight days per episode.
Asked whether the snowstorm predicted for Wednesday and Thursday was in the script, Spellman said, “No, but we’ll take what we can get.”
The episode is scheduled to air on Wednesday, May 12. See this week’s Mountain Enterprise for the full story.
This is part of the March 26, 2010 online edition of The Mountain Enterprise.
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